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Popolare di Bari 'cannot go on' without up to €1B in fresh capital, CEO says

Banca Popolare di Bari SCpA is in dire need of between €800 million to €1 billion in fresh capital so it can deal with impaired losses amounting to a quarter of its total loan book, Reuters cited CEO Vincenzo De Bustis as telling Italian daily newspaper Corriere della Sera.

De Bustis reportedly said the lender "cannot go on" without an immediate recapitalization as "its cost of credit has surpassed any acceptable measure," adding that the Italian lender had lost €1 billion partly because of the recession and and "lending practices outside of any rules in the last three or four years."

The CEO also said the bank may need to ax around 800 of its 3,000 employees, according to the Dec. 10 report.

In the week of Dec. 2, sources told Reuters that the bank had made a preliminary request to Italian deposit guarantee fund Fondo Interbancario di Tutela dei Depositi to help it shore up its capital.